Cities Are India’s Crucibles, The Youth Its Gold : Hardeep Singh Puri
Smart Cities Mission transforming ease of living for India’s urban population, said the minister
Shri Hardeep Singh Puri, Minister for Housing & Urban Affairs, GoI, commended the National Youth Conclave 2023 for providing a platform for young people to amplify their concerns on issues such as climate change, future of work, and youth in democracy. Speaking about the youth leading development, the Minister said that Ninety Thousand Crores is spent annually on youth development programs by the government. Referring to the culture of innovations, the Minister highlighted the explosion of start-ups in the country as a testament to the entrepreneurial culture that the youth of the country have inspired in recent years, he quipped.
Shri Puri unveiled many knowledge-products encapsulating innovations by youngsters in the field of urban development. Praising the combined efforts of Smart Cities Mission, NIUA and YuvaShakti, for organizing NYC 2023, the Minister said he was confident that India would be a world leader in all respects by 2047 due to the youth dividend.
Highlighting the pivotal role of the youth in the Smart Cities Mission and in leading innovations across government departments, Shri Puri said they have been nurtured and encouraged through various initiatives, to provide ‘out of the box’ solutions to help promote ease of living for India’s urban population. He appreciated The Urban Learning Internship Programme (TULIP) and the India Smart Cities Fellowship Programme (ISCF) initiatives that have offered the youth, targeted learning and collaboration opportunities, and have enhanced their professional development and employability. TULIP has pioneered similar interventions in other Central Government ministries and departments, and is facilitating the exchange of innovative ideas across government machinery.
The Minister said this transformative expansion would allow for an unprecedented explosion in innovation and therefore urged the youth to both capture existing avenues for productive work, and also meet the skill demand for emerging jobs.
He was addressing the NYC2023 hosted by National Institute of Urban Affairs (NIUA) in association with the Smart Cities Mission of Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs and the Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports under the aegis of India’s G20 presidency. The Conclave brought together young minds to deliberate on the U20 and Y20 priority areas and foster bright leaders of tomorrow, here today.
Earlier during the day, Sh. Kaushal Kishore, Hon’ble Minister of State, MoHUA, GoI, highlighted the need to work towards a ‘NashaMukt Bharat’ while emphasizing the strength of our ‘Yuvashakti’ as one of the most important contributors to the nation’s growth story. Other dignitaries present during the event were Sh. Kunal Kumar, Joint Secy. & Mission Director (SCM); Sh. Hitesh Vaidya, Director, NIUA; Smt. Meeta Rajivlochan, Secy., Youth Affairs (Virtual address); Sh. Praveen Chaudhary, U20-Sherpa and Sh. Anmol Sovit, Chair, Y20 Secretariat.
Presentations by winners of the 2021 and 2022 NIUA-NMCG Student Thesis Competition and CPIN Talks alongside panel discussions on “Creating Equal Futures in an Unequal World” and “Role of Media to enhance Youth Participation” took place in presence of various dignitaries, youth populace from various institutes and media representatives.
During the latter session, Ms. Nidhi Sharma, Sr. Assistant Editor, ET, discussed about the importance of active youth engagement and the need for transparency and information flow in the decision-making process. While Mr. Kaushik Deka, Executive Editor, India Today pointed out the media’s critical role in examining construction projects & showcasing its social and environmental impacts; Ms. Chitra Tripathi, Anchor, AajTak, outlined the importance of media in promoting the voice of the youth in urban spheres. As a concluding remark, Mr. Rajeev Jain, Additional Director General-MoHUA and Moderator for the session, emphasized the importance of youth participation in the decision-making process for urban areas and thus manifesting the nation’s urban development trajectory. The panel discussion was organized to encourage the active youth engagement in the overall growth of the nation as a part of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav and India’s G20 presidency and received an overwhelming response by the participants.
The Conclave, through quiz and debate competitions, discussions, climate cafe and engaging deliberations helped the youth understand the operations of democracy. The event covered 10+ thematic and breakout sessions with 50+ speakers, 100+ urban leaders, 300+ exhibits and case studies, 500+ climate leaders over the two days. 3000+ participants attended the sessions at Vigyan Bhavan and online mode. The national event witnessed participation from students and young professionals, experts, and innovators from all over the country to co-create, collaborate and connect on urban India’s pressing issues and a way forward.
Speaking at the valedictory session, Shri Amitabh Kant, Sherpa-India’s presidency @G20, reiterated the importance of orchestrating a pro-youth vision to ensure a thriving and equitable future for all. He said the role of youth as change makers and drivers of environmentally conscious behaviours, as the pillars of the economy, and as innovators and providers of cutting-edge solutions cannot be understated. He welcomed the youth leaders to join hands and work together to create a framework that enables the global community to translate its commitments for a bright future. Shri Hitesh Vaidya, Director, NIUA, concluded the session with a vote of thanks.
To know more about the National Youth Conclave, 2023: https://niua.in/youthengagement